If there's one year to get your flu shot, this is it

News Sep 18, 2020 by David Nickle Toronto.com

As COVID-19 numbers continue to rise in the province and in Toronto, getting a seasonal flu shot is more important than ever.

“If there’s one year to get your flu shot, this is going to be the year,” said University of Toronto professor and World Health Organization advisor Dr. Natasha Crowcroft in an interview with the Toronto Star this summer. 

“Flu can really knock the socks off people, and then they’re going to be much more vulnerable to COVID-19,” she said.

The annual flu vaccine is easy to come by here in Ontario. Every fall, the Ministry of Health procures enough vaccine and provides it free of charge – there’s no need to even present an OHIP card to receive it.

The flu vaccination can prevent the illness or greatly reduce its symptoms – but this year it could be a life-saver should a patient also contract COVID-19.

According to Dr. Naveed Mohammed, president of the Osler Health Network – which includes Etobicoke General Hospital – the cold and flu season means that hospitals will be seeing more patients in general.

And because many symptoms of influenza are also symptoms of COVID-19, many more patients will need to be tested and potentially treated than in a typical year.

To help deal with that influx, Osler has established a cold and flue clinic at Peel memorial Hospital and is working to establish one in Etobicoke.

“Cold and flu symptoms and COVID-19 symptoms are very similar and testing is the only way to tell,” he said.

In the meantime, the Ontario Ministry of Health has not yet announced the beginning and distribution of flu vaccines – and no clinics have been scheduled.

According to the Ontario Ministry of Health, flu shots will be available from family health practitioners, and for people aged five to 64 at some participating pharmacies.

Young children and the elderly should be vaccinated by their health practitioner or Toronto Public Health.

Toronto Public Health expects to be able to announce a list of flu vaccine clinics around the city by the end of September, but as of Sept. 18 had posted no information on their websites.

Beyond the flu shot, the Ontario Ministry of Health recommends measures for flu prevention that should be familiar in 2020.

The Ministry recommends frequent hand-washing, covering mouths and noses when coughing and sneezing, remaining at home when feeling sick, and frequently cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces. 

Symptoms of the flu can include fever, chills, cough, runny eyes, stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, muscle aches, tiredness and loss of appetite.

If there's one year to get your flu shot, this is it

Experts say that immunization against influenza is crucial during the COVID-19 pandemic

News Sep 18, 2020 by David Nickle Toronto.com

As COVID-19 numbers continue to rise in the province and in Toronto, getting a seasonal flu shot is more important than ever.

“If there’s one year to get your flu shot, this is going to be the year,” said University of Toronto professor and World Health Organization advisor Dr. Natasha Crowcroft in an interview with the Toronto Star this summer. 

“Flu can really knock the socks off people, and then they’re going to be much more vulnerable to COVID-19,” she said.

The annual flu vaccine is easy to come by here in Ontario. Every fall, the Ministry of Health procures enough vaccine and provides it free of charge – there’s no need to even present an OHIP card to receive it.

The flu vaccination can prevent the illness or greatly reduce its symptoms – but this year it could be a life-saver should a patient also contract COVID-19.

According to Dr. Naveed Mohammed, president of the Osler Health Network – which includes Etobicoke General Hospital – the cold and flu season means that hospitals will be seeing more patients in general.

And because many symptoms of influenza are also symptoms of COVID-19, many more patients will need to be tested and potentially treated than in a typical year.

To help deal with that influx, Osler has established a cold and flue clinic at Peel memorial Hospital and is working to establish one in Etobicoke.

“Cold and flu symptoms and COVID-19 symptoms are very similar and testing is the only way to tell,” he said.

In the meantime, the Ontario Ministry of Health has not yet announced the beginning and distribution of flu vaccines – and no clinics have been scheduled.

According to the Ontario Ministry of Health, flu shots will be available from family health practitioners, and for people aged five to 64 at some participating pharmacies.

Young children and the elderly should be vaccinated by their health practitioner or Toronto Public Health.

Toronto Public Health expects to be able to announce a list of flu vaccine clinics around the city by the end of September, but as of Sept. 18 had posted no information on their websites.

Beyond the flu shot, the Ontario Ministry of Health recommends measures for flu prevention that should be familiar in 2020.

The Ministry recommends frequent hand-washing, covering mouths and noses when coughing and sneezing, remaining at home when feeling sick, and frequently cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces. 

Symptoms of the flu can include fever, chills, cough, runny eyes, stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, muscle aches, tiredness and loss of appetite.

If there's one year to get your flu shot, this is it

Experts say that immunization against influenza is crucial during the COVID-19 pandemic

News Sep 18, 2020 by David Nickle Toronto.com

As COVID-19 numbers continue to rise in the province and in Toronto, getting a seasonal flu shot is more important than ever.

“If there’s one year to get your flu shot, this is going to be the year,” said University of Toronto professor and World Health Organization advisor Dr. Natasha Crowcroft in an interview with the Toronto Star this summer. 

“Flu can really knock the socks off people, and then they’re going to be much more vulnerable to COVID-19,” she said.

The annual flu vaccine is easy to come by here in Ontario. Every fall, the Ministry of Health procures enough vaccine and provides it free of charge – there’s no need to even present an OHIP card to receive it.

The flu vaccination can prevent the illness or greatly reduce its symptoms – but this year it could be a life-saver should a patient also contract COVID-19.

According to Dr. Naveed Mohammed, president of the Osler Health Network – which includes Etobicoke General Hospital – the cold and flu season means that hospitals will be seeing more patients in general.

And because many symptoms of influenza are also symptoms of COVID-19, many more patients will need to be tested and potentially treated than in a typical year.

To help deal with that influx, Osler has established a cold and flue clinic at Peel memorial Hospital and is working to establish one in Etobicoke.

“Cold and flu symptoms and COVID-19 symptoms are very similar and testing is the only way to tell,” he said.

In the meantime, the Ontario Ministry of Health has not yet announced the beginning and distribution of flu vaccines – and no clinics have been scheduled.

According to the Ontario Ministry of Health, flu shots will be available from family health practitioners, and for people aged five to 64 at some participating pharmacies.

Young children and the elderly should be vaccinated by their health practitioner or Toronto Public Health.

Toronto Public Health expects to be able to announce a list of flu vaccine clinics around the city by the end of September, but as of Sept. 18 had posted no information on their websites.

Beyond the flu shot, the Ontario Ministry of Health recommends measures for flu prevention that should be familiar in 2020.

The Ministry recommends frequent hand-washing, covering mouths and noses when coughing and sneezing, remaining at home when feeling sick, and frequently cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces. 

Symptoms of the flu can include fever, chills, cough, runny eyes, stuffy nose, sore throat, headache, muscle aches, tiredness and loss of appetite.